Excited States of Thio-2′-deoxyuridine Bearing an Extended π-Conjugated System: 3′,5′-Di-O-acetyl-5-phenylethynyl-4-thio-2′-deoxyuridine

Nonoshita, Daiki; Kashihara, Wataru; Tanabe, Kazuhito; Isozaki, Tasuku; Xu, Yao−Zhong and Suzuki, Tadashi (2021). Excited States of Thio-2′-deoxyuridine Bearing an Extended π-Conjugated System: 3′,5′-Di-O-acetyl-5-phenylethynyl-4-thio-2′-deoxyuridine. The Journal of Physical Chemistry A, 125(2) pp. 597–606.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jpca.0c09343


A new thio-2′-deoxyuridine with an extended π-conjugated group was successfully synthesized: 3′,5′-di-O-acetyl-5-phenylethynyl-4-thio-2′-deoxyuridine. The thio-2′-deoxyuridine derivative has a large red-shifted absorption band in the UVA region and also shows fluorescence, a rare photo-property among thionucleobases/thionucleosides. The triplet–triplet absorption spectrum and the rate constants (the intrinsic decay rate constant of the triplet state, the self-quenching rate constant, and the quenching rate constant of the triplet state by an oxygen molecule) of the thio-2′-deoxyuridine were obtained by transient absorption spectroscopy. The quantum yield of intersystem crossing and the quantum yield of singlet molecular oxygen formation (ϕΔ) under an oxygen atmosphere were also determined. The ϕΔ value of the new thio-2′-deoxyuridine was found to be substantially higher than all reported values of other thio-2′-deoxyribonucleosides in low oxygen concentrations similar to cancer cell environments. The fluorescence quantum yield depended on the excitation wavelength, revealing certain photochemical reactions in the higher excited singlet states. However, when excited into the higher excited state with non-resonant two-photon absorption, the ϕΔ of the thio-2′-deoxyuridine derivative was found to remain sufficiently large. These findings should be very useful for the development of thio-2′-deoxyribonucleoside-based pharmaceuticals as DNA-specific photosensitizers for photochemotherapy.

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